Thursday, March 19, 2015

VacCynicism

The "system and cast of characters" that told us for decades that:
  • Fluoride in our public water systems was good for us.
  • Vioxx was a safe and life-saving drug.
  • Eggs should be eliminated from our diets.
  • Assured us that Fen-Phen, Ephedra, and a whole list of other weight loss drugs were perfectly safe.
  • Statin drugs are helpful, even necessary, for about half of us.
  • We should eliminate natural fats from our diets.
  • Artificial sweeteners were perfectly safe.
  • Flu vaccines are pervasively efficacious deterrents.
  • Corporations that create android crops should be able to successfully sue neighboring farmers whose natural crops were cross-pollinated with the "alien" crops.
  • Margarine is better for us than butter.
  • Protects manufacturers and policy makers from liability lawsuits if their vaccines, in fact, do harm.
  • (Though I could go on and on, I'll curtail the list in the interest of brevity.)
now presumes to demonize those of us who are a bit skeptical.

It turns out that those public health policy decisions were built on faulty assumptions and dubious science.  In most cases, the system and the cast of characters simply say "Oops, we goofed," and conveniently divorce themselves from the pain and suffering and loss and funerals of those adversely affected by those policies.

In each of the historical scenarios I referenced above, money changed hands as a result of those policy decisions (LOTS of money), and conflicts of interests were rampant (and still are).  Virtually all one-size-fits-all policies turn out to be fatally flawed, literally.

That same system and cast of characters is now telling us that it is wise public policy to give 69 vaccinations to our children (49 by age 6 and 20 more by age 18). 69! Really?

Even today, there is legislation pending in several states that would eliminate the right of parents to "just say no" to the proliferation of vaccines. 

I'm not a physician.  I'm not a public policy expert.  I'm not even a health researcher (by credentials, that is).  I'm not even interested in debating the efficacy of vaccines.  I do, however, care deeply about my health, the health of my family, and the health of the communities I serve and live in.

And, I am an unapologetic cynic (especially in light of the evidence noted at the top of this post), when it comes to public policy that robs ANY of us of the freedom to make our own decisions about our "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" (which includes our health).  

Aldous Huxley (Brave New World, 1932) is looking more prophetic all the time.

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